Knights Templar Secrets

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Before we delve into the Secrets of the Knights Templar, we should at least explore their creation.

The Order of the Knights Templars, called also the Poor Knights of Christ and the Temple of Solomon — was founded in 1118 by Hugues de Payens, a Knight of Burgundy and Godefroid de St. Omer, a Knight of Northern France.  Their public goal was to protect the pilgrims who flocked to the holy land after the First Crusade.  Baldwin I, King of Jerusalem, allocated to those two knights and seven others who joined with them quarters near the site of Solomon's Temple, hence their name  Templars was derived.   

It was obvious that these nine knights would be unable to protect very much.  They had a hidden agenda.  It was to excavate the site of Solomon's Temple, specifically under the stables.  They eventually received sacred knowledge, amazing treasures and religious artifacts.

Nine years later Hugues de Payens visited Europe with the object of placing the new order upon a more secure foundation and of gaining recognition and a Rule from Rome.  He secured the enthusiastic support of S. Bernard the famous Abbot of Clairvaux, and in 1128 a Rule, which was drawn up for them by S. Bernard himself, w3as approved for the Knights Templars by the Council of Troyes.   It was not until 1163 that Pope Alexander III issued the charter of the Order, and its organization was fully established.

What began as a 9-man team of well-intentioned noblemen, dedicated to defending the Holy Land from the Saracens, became the most powerful and most secretive organization in history.  The Templars owned many fabled religious treasures including, the Crown of Thorns worn by Jesus as he perished on the Cross, and they were also the guardians of the Holy Grail.

Because the Templars possessed great wealth, the Kings of Europe came to them cap in hand to negotiate loans. They created many fundamental aspects of today’s international banking system like the bank note and letters of credit. Yet faithful to their solemnly sworn vows of poverty, the individual members of this secret society were penniless.

When the Knights Templar was disbanded in the 14th century, to escape persecution by King Philip of France, the Templars’ moved their treasure to La Rochelle where their Large Fleet was moored and the ships and treasure simply disappeared.   To this day, its whereabouts is unknown.

Some history books describe how the Templars were guardians of a mysterious "great secret" which could have been related to their connection with the grail.  But more recent books have suggested this "great secret" may have been a   knowledge which, if revealed, would undermine our fundamental view of Christianity itself.

Some claim that the organization never really died.   The official end of the Templars was signified by the execution of their the last Grand Master, Jacques de Molay, who was roasted alive before a chanting mob in Paris in 1314.   But the reality is that they simply changed their name and went underground.   There is evidence that certain famous figures were members of the Order — hundreds of years after it officially ceased to be.  Sir Isaac Newton is named as one.  The great Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama journeyed with the Templar cross insignia on his sails, as did Christopher Columbus.  Stories suggest that the Templars discovered America some 80 years before Columbus.

The Order of the Knights Templar is still in existence today, though under another name.  Throughout Europe, its members still meet secretly to discuss unknown business, conduct sacred rituals and plot our destiny behind closed doors. 

The order of warrior monks who were to become one of the most powerful and controversial organizations in European medieval history, were known by a variety of names; the Poor Knights of Christ and the Temple of Solomon, la Milice du Christ or, more commonly, the Knights Templar.  Detailed accounts of the founding of the order are non-existent.  The main source used by historians are the documents written by Guillaume de Tyre some seventy years after the event, and while this is commonly accepted as the true account, alternative versions do exist, some of which are supported by documentation that makes them seem reasonably credible.


According to Guillaume de Tyre and as stated earlier, the Order was founded by a Knight of the Count of Champagne, a certain Hugh de Payen, acting in collaboration with André de Montbard, the uncle of Bernard of Clairvaux. In 1118, the two knights along with seven companions presented themselves to the younger brother of Godfroi de Bouillon who had accepted the title of King Baudoin I of Jerusalem. They announced to the monarch that it was their intention to found an order of warrior monks so that 'as far as their strength permitted, they should keep the roads and highways safe . . . with a special regard for the protection of pilgrims.' The new order took vows of personal poverty and chastity and swore to hold all their property in common. The king granted them quarters which included the stables of what was believed to be the Temple of Solomon. The Patriarch of Jerusalem granted the new order of knights the right to wear the double barred Cross of Lorraine as their insignia. The original nine knights were:

Hugh de Payen, a Knight and vassal of Hugh de Champagne and a relative by marriage to the St Clairs of Roslin.
André de Montbard, the uncle of Bernard of Clairvaux and another vassal of Hugh de Champagne.
Geoffroi de St Omer, a son of Hugh de St Omer.

Payen de Montdidier, a relative of the ruling family of Flanders.
Achambaud de St-Amand, another relative of the ruling house of Flanders.
Geoffroi Bisol,

Gondemar and Rosal were Cistercian monks who transferred their allegiance and many saw this transfer as one that took place between the monastic and the military arm of the same order, for the Cistercians and the Knights Templar were so closely linked by ties of blood, patronage and shared objectives that many Templar scholars believe that they were two arms from the same body.

The position of Hugh de Champagne in this whole affair is curious and confusing in the extreme. There is a letter to him from the Bishop of Chartres dated 1114, congratulating him on his intention to join la Milice du Christ, which is another name for the Knights Templar. He certainly took up a form of lay associate membership of the order in 1124 and thereby created a bizarre anomaly in feudal terms, for by joining the Order and swearing obedience to its Grand Master Hugh de Payen he came under the direct control of a man who in the normal social order of things was his own vassal. There is a secret Templar archive in the principality of Seborga in northern Italy which has recently been discovered containing documents that demand further study. It is claimed that St Bernard of Clairvaux founded a monastery there in 1113, to protect a 'great secret'. This monastery under the direction of its abbot, Edouard, contained two monks who had joined the order with Bernard, two knights who took the names of Gondemar and Rosal on their profession as monks. One document claims that in February 1117 Bernard came to this monastery released Gondemar and Rosal from their vows and then blessed these two monks and their seven companions, prior to their departure to Jerusalem. This departure was not immediate and did not take place until November 1118. The seven companions of the two ex-Cistercians are listed as follows: André de Montbard, Count Hugh I de Champagne, Hugh de Payen, Payen de Montdidier, Geoffroi de Sainte-Omer, Archambaud de St Amand and Geoffroi Bisol. The document records that St Bernard nominated Hugh de Payen as the first grand master of the Poor Militia of Christ and that Hugh de Payen was consecrated in this position by the Abbot Edouard of Seborga.

Whether or not Hugh de Champagne was directly involved in the actual founding of the Knights Templar is a decision we will leave to scholars of far greater wisdom than ourselves. Whatever the truth may prove to be, two things are certain. Firstly the count of Champagne was at the very least a prime mover behind the scenes even if he is not to be numbered among the original nine founding knights.   Secondly, all those involved in both founding and promoting the Order were linked by a complex web of direct family relationships. 

The main reason given for the founding of the Order, to protect the pilgrim routes, does not bear any close examination whatsoever for the first ten or twelve years of the Order's existence. It would have been a physical impossibility for nine middle-aged knights to protect the dangerous route from Jaffa to Jerusalem from all the bandits and marauding infidels who believed that the pilgrims who provided such easy pickings, were a gift from God. The recorded actions of the knights make this an even more incredible scenario, for they did not patrol the dangerous roads of the Holy Land to protect the pilgrims, but spent nine years in the dangerous and demanding task of excavating and mining a series of tunnels under their quarters on the Temple Mount. These arduous tasks were completed with the patronage and support of the King of Jerusalem.

The tunnels mined by the Templars were re-excavated in 1867, by Lieutenant Warren of the Royal Engineers. The access tunnel descends vertically downwards for eighty feet through solid rock before radiating in a series of minor tunnels horizontally under the site of the ancient temple itself. Lieutenant Warren failed to find the hidden treasure of the Temple of Jerusalem, but in the tunnels excavated so laboriously by the Templars, they found a spur, remnants of a lance, a small Templar cross and the major part of a Templar sword. These artifacts are now preserved for posterity by the Templar archivist for Scotland, Robert Brydon of Edinburgh. Also in his keeping is a letter from a certain Captain Parker who took part in Warren's excavation under the Temple and several subsequent ones. Parker wrote to Robert's grandfather in 1912 and told of how on one of these expeditions he had discovered a secret room carved in the solid rock beneath the temple site with a passage leading from it to the Mosque of Omar. Parker went on to describe how when he broke through the stonework at the end of the passage and found himself within the confines of the mosque, he had to flee to save himself from a small army of extremely angry and devout Muslims. Two questions arise from the nature and position of these Templar excavations. What were they seeking? And how did they know precisely where to dig?

On the exterior of Chartres Cathedral, by the north door, there is a carving on a pillar, which gives us an indication of the object sought by the burrowing Templars, representing the Ark of the Covenant, but in a rather strange context. The Ark is depicted as being transported on a wheeled vehicle. Legend recounts that the Ark of the Covenant had been secreted deep beneath the Temple in Jerusalem centuries before the fall of the city to the Romans. It had been hidden there to protect it from yet another invading army who had laid the city to waste. Hugh de Payen had been chosen to lead the expedition mounted to locate the Ark and bring it back to Europe. Persistent legends recount that the Ark was then hidden for a considerable time deep beneath the crypt of Chartres Cathedral. The same legends also claim that the Templars found many other sacred artifacts from the old Jewish temple in the course of their investigations and that a considerable quantity of documentation was also located during the dig. While there has been much speculation as to the exact nature of these documents, a reasonable consensus is emerging that they contained scriptural scrolls, treatises on sacred geometry, and details of certain knowledge, art and science - the hidden wisdom of the ancient initiates of the Judaic/Egyptian tradition. Until very recently these legends received short shrift from academic historians, but that situation is undergoing considerable change. One modern archeological discovery tends to support the speculative scenario that the Templars knew where to look and precisely what they were seeking.. The Copper Scroll, one of the Dead Sea Scrolls discovered at Quamran, tends to confirm not only the objective of the Templar excavations but also, albeit indirectly, gives some credence to the bizarre concept of the transmission of knowledge through the generations that led to the Templar's discoveries in Jerusalem.

The Copper Scroll, which was unrolled and deciphered at Manchester University under the guidance of John Allegro, was a list of all the burial sites used to hide the various items both sacred and profane described as the treasure of the Temple of Jerusalem. Many of these sites have been re-excavated since the discovery of the Copper Scroll, and several of them have disclosed not Temple treasure but evidence of Templar excavation made in the twelfth century.

At about the time the excavations were near completion, Count Fulk of Anjou sped with all haste to Jerusalem where he took the oath of allegiance to the new order.  He immediately granted the order an annuity of thirty Angevin livres before returning to Anjou. When one considers that the vast majority of knights joining the order stayed within its ranks for their lifetime, this action by Fulk of Anjou is a trifle strange. His apparent freedom of maneuver, despite his oath of allegiance to the Order of the Knights Templar can be explained by the fact that Fulk was not only the Count of Anjou and a member of the Templar Orderbut was married to the sister of the King of Jerusalem who died childless, thus Fulk himself later became the King of Jerusalem.

The next notable figure to arrive in Jerusalem was the Count of Champagne who, as we have mentioned earlier, took the oath of membership in 1124. Behind the scenes in Europe Bernard of Clairvaux, who had become a senior advisor to the pope, consolidated his position within the Church. Bernard began to persuade the pope that the new military order which was already active in the Holy Land should be given papal backing and a formal position within the Church. For this they would need a rule, a formal charter stating the aims and objectives of the order, the obligations of its members to it and the rules of membership as well as the establishment of a formal command structure.

The main excavations in Jerusalem were completed in late December of 1127. Hugh de Payen with all the knights of the new order returned to France. The Grand Master Hugh de Payen and his principal co-founder of the order, Andre de Montbard, traveled to England to see the King and, having obtained safe-conduct from him, went directly north across the border to Scotland, where the two knights stayed at Roslin with the St Clairs, who were Hugh's relatives by marriage. The lord of Roslin made an immediate grant of land to the new order which became their headquarters in Scotland. The oldest Templar site in Scotland, once known as Ballontrodoch, is now called Temple after the order. 


As stated in the Introduction, the Templars gained official recognition and were granted their rule in 1128 at the Council of Troyes, which was dominated by Bernard of Clairvaux. The new order soon gained an exceptional degree of legal autonomy, which placed its activities completely beyond the reach of bishops, Kings or emperors, making it responsible through its grand master to the pope alone.  Before his election the current pope had been a member of the Cistercian Order, and was a close friend of  St Bernard, who was his principal advisor.   This was not the only example of either nepotism or the 'old pals act' that can be found in the early years of the Templar Order.  The grant of land at Ballontrodoch by the St Clairs of Roslin was followed by many similar gifts from other pious members of the aristocracy who also made generous donations of land and finance to the rapidly growing order.

Membership grew with incredible speed and the order soon numbered among its ranks representatives from all the leading families in Western Europe.   France, Provence, and the Languedoc-Roussillon areas became its major power base.

From the time of their foundation until the fall of Acre, the Templars exerted influence and then great power in the Holy Land.  Guarding the pilgrim routes, transporting men, materials and pilgrims from ports in Europe, important though it was, played only a small part in their activities.  They built castles in important defensive positions and played a significant role in military and established important bases throughout the Holy Land, to the extent that the Knights Templar became one of the most significant forces within the Kingdom of Jerusalem.  The Templars soon acquired a well-earned reputation for bravery in battle and never willingly surrendered to the enemy.  However, their reputation for generalship and strategic thinking is not rated so highly.  Their extensive and costly military activities in Outremer, as Palestine became known, were sustained by the profits from their estates and activities in Western Europe


The Knights Templar owned many estates and property of varying size scattered throughout Europe from Denmark, Scotland and the Orkney Islands in the north, to France, Italy and Spain in the south.   They also had many commercial interests and their activities included the operation of farms, vineyards, stone quarries and mines. As a result of their two-fold interest in protecting pilgrims on the one hand and maintaining communications with their operative bases in the Holy Land on the other, the Templars operated a well-organized fleet which exceeded that of any state at the time. For military purposes, this included a number of highly maneuverable war galleys fitted with rams and for the purpose of carrying pilgrims, troops, horses and commercial cargoes, they owned a large number of ships which plied the Mediterranean between bases in Italy, France, Spain and the Holy Land. Their main seat of naval power in the Mediterranean was on the Island of Majorca, while their principal port on the Atlantic coast was the highly fortified harbor of La Rochelle from where, it is alleged, they conducted trade with Greenland, the British Isles, the North American mainland and Mexico. Within fifty years of their foundation, the Knights Templar became a commercial force equal in power to many states; within a hundred years they had developed into the medieval pre-cursors of multi-national conglomerates with interests in every form of commercial activity of that time and were far richer than any kingdom in Europe.  At the time of the Templars arrest in France, they are said to have loaded all their substantial treasure on to a dozen ships on the Atlantic coast, sailing west never to be seen again.  Some say the treasure is in Scotland.  Others say it is in Greenland or Newfoundland, or Oak Island off the coast of Nova Scotia.


The effect of Templar activity upon European culture and commerce was remarkable and yet many modern Church historians still accuse the order of being formed of illiterate knights. The so-called 'illiterates' developed sophisticated and coded means of communication which transcended the linguistic barriers which otherwise would have fragmented and diffused the commercial impact of their activities. Among the principal items of their trading activities were those which we would describe in modern terms as 'technology and ideas'. The Templar communication network was the principal route by which knowledge of astronomy, mathematics, herbal medicine and healing skills made their way from the Holy Land to Europe. Among the technological advances brought back by the warrior knights were mouth-to-mouth resuscitation, the telescope and a financial instrument which they acquired from the Sufis of Islam, known as 'the note of hand'.

The Templars were great builders. On their own estates they built and maintained fortified castles and farms, barns, outbuildings and mills as well as dormitory blocks, stables and workshops. Some Templar castles, particularly in southern Europe and the Holy Land, were built on defensive sites which posed incredible difficulties of construction. They were particularly renowned for building strategically situated castles with water gates on coasts and rivers. The classic round Templar church, founded on octagonal geometry and supposedly based on the design of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem, became such a distinctive feature of Templar construction that it became almost diagnostic of their activity or involvement. This type of building formed only a small part of their church construction program, albeit of very special and cabalistic significance. The vast majority of Templar churches, especially those in the southern regions of Europe, are small, undecorated, rectangular structures often with apsidal ends.

According to many scholars, including the ecclesiastical historian Fred Gettings, the Templars were openly involved in the financing and construction of the Gothic cathedrals. The sudden flowering of the Gothic style of architecture, which enabled cathedrals to be built of far greater height with more windows, brought about a new era in church design and art that allowed larger naves and greater spaces, uncluttered by pillars, to be created within church buildings. It is no coincidence that this architectural form, which cannot be explained as an evolutionary development from the Romanesque style that preceded it, arose after the knights returned from their excavations in Jerusalem.

While many of the great cathedrals were heavily influenced by Templar thinking, geometry and design, one above all others is a hymn to their direct involvement and belief, the Cathedral of Chartres. Constructed with almost unbelievable speed, Chartres Cathedral is portrayed by the Church as the product of co-operative effort by the townspeople, financed by the pilgrim trade. This totally fails to explain the massive and immediate input of financial resources that must have been necessary in order to pay for the quarrying and transport of the stone and the enormous expenditure on the vast numbers of stonemasons, sculptors and other craftsmen who would have been employed to complete such a vast and complex edifice at such speed. It is highly doubtful if the proceeds of the pilgrimage to Chartres over the period of its construction would have paid for the creation and installation of the stained-glass windows, much less for the construction and decoration of the entire building. The only source of finance in Europe at that time which could have produced the resources necessary was the Order of the Knights Templar.

In England, craftsmen who work in stone are known as stonemasons. In France they are known collectively as members of the Compannonage who, in the twelfth century, were broadly divided into three groups. These fulfilled separate functions under the umbrella of the same craft: the Children of Father Soubise were responsible for the construction of ecclesiastical buildings in the Romanesque style; the Children of Maitre Jacques were also known as Les Compagnons Passant and one of their primary functions was the art of bridge building. The craftmasons who built the Gothic cathedrals were known as the Children of Solomon, named after King Solomon who, according to the scriptures, commissioned the first temple in Jerusalem. This branch of the Compannonage were instructed in the art of sacred geometry by Cistercian monks and it was the Knights Templar who, acting with the agreement of Bernard of Clairvaux, gave a 'rule' to the Children of Solomon in March 1145, which laid down the conditions required for living and working. The preface to his rule contains words which have been intimately associated with the Knights Templar ever since:

"We the Knights of Christ and of the Temple follow the destiny that prepares us to die for Christ. We have the wish to give this rule of living, of work and of honour to the constructors of churches so that Christianity can spread throughout the earth not so that our name should be remembered, Oh Lord, but that Your Name should live."



The Order of the Knights Templar attained immense wealth, property, power and prestige in the years that followed the completion of their excavations in Jerusalem. Under the guiding hand of Bernard of Clairvaux the once struggling order of Cistercian monks also expanded at a similar rate. Within Bernard's lifetime the Cistercians established over 300 abbeys throughout Europe, a truly outstanding era of growth that was never even approached, much less exceeded, by any monastic order other than the Templars.

The Cistercians became known as the 'apostles of the frontier' due to their habit of refusing donations of land near major centers of population and opting instead to site their new establishments in marginal lands in the mountains and barren reaches of Christian Europe. The Templars on the other hand, sited their "offices" within cities, at centers of pilgrimage and sea ports as well as in the countryside, with a special emphasis on estates strategically situated near major trade and pilgrimage routes. In England and Wales they had over 5000 properties and they also owned a considerable number in Scotland, Ireland the Low Countries and the German states; they even had estates in Hungary guarding the overland routes to the Holy Land. Spain, long a center of devout pilgrimage to the shrine of St James of Compostela, was liberally adorned with Templar strongholds and the order played its part in defending Christian Spain against Moorish incursions.


Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery and similar orders arose and achieved some degree of renown by modeling themselves on the Templars. Two such orders in Spain were the Knights of Calatrava and the Knights of Alcantara. Both orders were founded shortly after the Templars and St. Bernard of Clairvaux is known to have played a part in this.

There were many Templar establishments in Italy, which was one of the major embarkation points on the sea routes to the kingdom of Jerusalem, but the most important power base for the Knights Templar in Europe was France. In the south are the regions of Provence and the Languedoc-Roussillon which, in the Templar era, were separate entities from the kingdom of France. Throughout these southern regions Templar holdings were plentiful, with over thirty per cent of the total estates owned by the Templars throughout Europe situated in the Languedoc-Roussillon alone. 

Historians have drawn a connection between Freemasonry and its many branches to the Templars.  Degrees in the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite such as the Knight of Saint Andrew, the Knight of Rose-Croix, and the 32nd Degree in Consistory make reference to a " Masonic Knights Templar" connection.

John J. Robinson alleges in his book Born in Blood: The Lost Secrets of Freemasonry, that French Templars fled to Scotland after the suppression of the Order, fearing persecution from both Church and state.  He claims they sought refuge with a lodge of Scottish stone masons within which they began to teach the virtues of chivalry and obedience, using the builders tools as a metaphor; and eventually they began taking in " speculative masons" (men of other professions) in order to ensure the continuation of the Order.  According to Robinson, the Order existed in secret in this form until the formation of the United Grand Lodge of England in 1717.  An example of Templar-Masonic transitory symbolism can be found in Rosslyn Chapel owned by the first Earls of Rosslyn Sinclair a family with well documented ties to Scottish Freemasonry.

The case is also made in Michael Baigent and Richard Leigh's book The Temple and the Lodge.

The Order of the Solar Temple is one infamous example of a " neo-Templar" group, founded in 1984, that claimed descent from the original Knights Templar; there are several other self-styled orders that also claim to be descended from, or revivals of, the Templar Order.  One such organization is the Sovereign Military Order of the Temple of Jerusalem (SMOTJ), an ecumenical Christian society based on the traditions of the medieval Knights Templar and principles of chivalry.  However, the order is not a genuine order of chivalry, having neither official state recognition nor a head of state as sovereign.  SMOTJ was created in 1804 and is dedicated to the preservation of the holy sites in and around Jerusalem, charitable works, and antiquarian research.  In 2001, the most prominent faction of the SMOTJ was recognized by the United Nations as a non-governmental organization.

The Following Orders have also been associated with the Knights Templar:

Cistercian Order.  A French order reformed by Saint Bernard.  Worked closely with the Knights Templar.

Company of the Sacred Sacrament (Compagnie de Saint - Sacrement ) A secret society operating from the seminary of Saint-Sulpice in Paris.  It has been theorized that this Order and the Priory of Sion are one and the same.

Knights Hospitaller of St. John.  Early order in the Holy Land committed to service.  Later became a fighting order and is known today as the Sovereign Knights of Malta.

Knights of Christ.  The largest surviving Templar organization, reorganized in Portugal after the Templar order was arrested.

Priory of Sion.  Also known as the Prieure se Sion.  Claimed to have existed for nearly one thousand years.  May have provided the impetus for the creation of the Knights Templar.

Society of Notre-Dame of Montreal.  Religious group evolving from the Company of the Sacred Sacrament.

Ultimately, throughout history and to this day, various organizations have tried to claim links to the original Templar order. To date, except for the above listed groups, none of these claims is historically verifiable nor widely accepted in academia.


Templar castles and buildings were usually strategically placed on hilltop positions commanding panoramic views over the trade routes of Europe.  Prior to the Templars, Europe was a group of squabbling kingdoms.  Long-distance trade was largely non-existent, except by sea, and all travelers were vulnerable to attack by brigands and extortion by feudal lords who charged a toll for safe passage through their lands. Towns were small and relatively powerless, being subject to the all-pervading will of the Church/State establishment or the arbitrary rule of the seigneur, or lord, of the district. With the advent of the Knights Templar all this was about to dramatically change.

The Templars objective of protecting the pilgrimage routes was not restricted to travel within the Holy Land. Not only did they control the routes spreading like a fan northwards from the Mediterranean coast, which were used by the devout in their attempts to reach the birth place of the Savior, but they also policed all the other pilgrim routes as well. A complex series of communication networks linked every part of Europe to the major international sites of pilgrimage in Jerusalem, Rome and, most important of all in the twelfth to fourteenth centuries, St James of Compostela in Spain. These routes alone linked all the major population centers in Europe. In addition to these were all the national sites of pilgrimage, such as Canterbury in England; Chartres, Mont-St-Michel, Rocamadour and the many other sites of veneration of the Black Madonna in France. With Templar protection, travel by pilgrim or trader alike along the major routes of Europe was now possible in comparative safety and freedom from extortion or assault. One other innovation made by the Templars further enhanced the safety of trade and accelerated the change in the balance of power between the feudal lords and the towns. This was the creation of an efficient and sophisticated banking system.


Not only did the Templars make strategic investments in land and agriculture, but they invested in basic industries which provided the essential ingredients for the massive expansion in building, which began to change the face of Europe. Using their own commercial insights as well as techniques which they adopted from their Muslim opponents in the east, they developed the concept of financial transfer by 'note of hand' into something like its modern equivalent, developed the bankers check and the pre-cursor of the credit card. This latter development arose from the financial needs created by the medieval equivalent of the 'package tour industry' - the pilgrimage trade. Whether to Rome, Jerusalem or Compostela, pilgrimage was a long, arduous and expensive enterprise for the pilgrim and a source of immense profit for the Church and innkeepers, ferrymen and others en route.

The pilgrim didn't want to carry large sums of money when travelling, because he was afraid of robbery, extortion or an unforeseen accident.   The answer was simple; seek out the master of the local Templar commanderie and deposit sufficient funds with him to cover the estimated cost of the return journey, including travel, accommodation and ancillary costs such as alms and gift-giving to the important ecclesiastical sites en route and at the final destination. In return for the financial deposit, the Templar treasurer would give the traveler a coded chit as a form of receipt and as a means of exchange. At each overnight stop, or where alms or offerings had to be given, the pilgrim would hand his chit to the local Templar representative who would pay any dues outstanding, re-code the chit accordingly and return it to its owner. When the pilgrimage was over and the weary traveler had returned home, he would present the chit to the Templar treasurer who had first issued it. Any balance of credit would be returned in cash, or if the pilgrim had overspent he would be presented with the appropriate bill. The entire pilgrimage trade policed by the Templars, who also acted as the bankers for this form of travel, bears a startling resemblance to the modern package tour industry. The modern equivalent of the Templar chit is, of course, the credit card. 

Templar banking practice also arranged safe transfer of funds for international and local trade, the Church and the State. In the medieval era it was forbidden for Christians to charge interest on loans and therefore money lending as a profession had been traditionally restricted to the Jews. This did little to enhance the reputation of the Jews as a racial group, which was already jeopardized by the persistent allegation that they were 'Christ killers'.

The Knights Templar found a way around this restriction which allowed them to lend considerable sums of money at interest without being subjected to the charge of usury. It was quite permissible to charge rent for the leasing of a house or land, so the Templars used this principle in their money lending and charged 'rent' rather than interest for their services rendered. The rent was payable at the time the loan was granted and was added to the capital sum borrowed. By this euphemism the Templars avoided being brought before the courts on the un-Christian charge of usury. Templar wealth was such that their financial services were not only sought by the merchants and landowners of feudal Europe, but by the princes of the Church and State. They lent to bishops to finance church building programs; to princes, kings and emperors to finance state works, building programs, wars and crusades. Within the twin embrace of financial security and safe travel, Europe began to transform itself. Safe and effective trade over longer distances led to the accumulation of capital and the emergence of a newly prosperous merchant class, the urban bourgeoisie. The new-found wealth of the city merchants changed the balance of power still further in favor of the towns and cities. With the peace and tranquillity of the countryside now ensured by the activities of the Knights Templar the feudal lords began to lose the raison d'etre on which their power was based.

The Order of the Knights Templar, despite its relatively short life span, was the major instrument of transformative change in medieval Europe. The Templars brought many blessings of knowledge and technology from their Arab opponents in the Holy Land, that conferred immense benefits on the European population. The Gothic cathedrals that arose from their knowledge of sacred geometry still adorn the European landscape and form a permanent series of 'prayers in stone' that raise their spires skyward in silent supplication. When taken as a whole, rather than studied in isolation, the various activities of the Knights Templar are like a huge mosaic of individual pieces which together form a picture which accurately predicted the future. The order was not merely the medieval pre-cursor of the modern multi-national conglomerate but was in many respects an early embryonic form of the European Union. However, success, wealth and power stimulated jealousy and resentment, especially from those who were heavily in debt to the order.


Philip le Bel (1268-1314), the King of France, was one monarch among many who was heavily in debt to the Order. He also had a further cause for resentment, for when a young man, his application to join it had been refused. During one period of civil unrest in his nearly bankrupt kingdom he sought refuge in the Paris Temple.  Bedazzled by the vast store of bullion he saw there, he resolved to find a way to make it his own and cancel his enormous debt to the knightly bankers. He soon found an opportunity to destroy the Order.

Plausible reasons for an investigation of any suspect individual or organization were not hard to find in that age of repression and injustice. The perfect means for dubious enterprise had long been perfected. The dreaded Inquisition had honed its evil arts of torture, secret trial and condemnation during its sixty year novitiate in the campaign against the Cathars. Philip knew that there had been contact between the Templars and Islam and links had also been proved between the Knights and the Cathars Certain knights who had been expelled from the Order were bribed or blackmailed into making accusations of heresy against their former brothers.

The French King prepared his case with secrecy and skill. The death of the pope gave him the opportunity to suborn his successor. On Friday the thirteenth of October 1307, Jaques de Molay Grand Master of the Templars, and sixty of his senior knights were arrested in Paris: simultaneously many thousands of other Templars were arrested throughout the realm of France. A few escaped arrest and once the word got out the remainder simply fled; an episode commemorated by the saying Friday the thirteenth, unlucky for some.

Under the King's orders the Templar high command were tortured for several years. The financially astute monarch had the gall to charge the Order for their upkeep for the entire period of their imprisonment. The final barbaric act of this dreadful charade took place on the Ile des Juifs, on the 14th March 1314. The elderly Grand Master, Jaques de Molay and the Preceptor of Normandy, Geoffroi de Charney, were publicly burnt on a slow fire. Before his death de Molay is on record as prophesying the imminent demise of the king and the pope. Both died within the year. When the King's agents visited the Templar treasury immediately after the first arrests, their great treasure, the very cause and objective of this brutal enterprise, had vanished without trace, as had almost the entire Templar fleet The king had been foiled. French Masonic ritual indicates that Scotland was designated as the place of refuge or safe keeping for the Templar treasures


One of the charges against the Templars was that of idolatry; the veneration or worship of an idol called Baphomet Various translations have been offered for the name Baphomet; Idries Shah author of The Sufis, claims that it is a corruption of the Arabic abufihamet (pronounced bufhimat) which translates as 'Father of Understanding'. Magnus Eliphas Levi the mystical writer of the last century, proposed that it should be spelled in reverse as TEM. OHP. AB. This he then construed as Templi Hominum Pacis Omnium Abbas or 'Father of the Temple of Universal Peace Among Men'.34 Another legend equates Baphomet with the severed head of St. John the Baptist who was venerated by the Knights Templar. The Atbash cipher, an esoteric code used by the Essenes to disguise the meaning of their scriptures, was applied to the name Baphomet by the Dead Sea Scroll scholar Hugh Schonfield. The cipher produced the word Sophia, the spiritual principle of Wisdom which is usually associated with the ancient Greek or early Mesopotamian goddesses. The Templar cult of the Black Madonna, black carvings or icons of the Madonna and Child, supports this concept.

At first glance this group looks like a variation upon normal Catholic practice of the time. The reality is very different however, especially when we take into account the influence of ancient Egyptian ideas on the Templars In ancient Egyptian symbolism, the color black indicates wisdom. In the cult of the Black Madonna the Templars were venerating the Mother of Wisdom, the ancient goddess Sophia embodied in the form of the goddess Isis with the Horus child. This pagan concept was disguised as the Christian Madonna and Child.

Reactions to the suppression of the Templars varied from country to country. German knights of the Order either joined the Hospitallers or the Teutonic Knights. One leading Scottish Templar, William St. Clair of Roslin, who was the great-great-grandfather of the founder of Rosslyn Chapel, was killed in Lithuania fighting for the Teutonic Knights. In Portugal the Templars were not suppressed at all, they simply changed their name to the Knights of Christ and carried on under royal patronage. Many years later Vasco de Gama the explorer, became a member and Prince Henry the Navigator was a Grand Master of the re-named Order. The Archbishop of Compostela made a vain plea for clemency for the brave knights by writing to the pope begging that the Templars be spared as they were needed for the Reconquista the fight against the Moors to recapture Spain for the Catholic monarchy.

This pressing need for military skills, discipline and dedication to the Christian re-conquest of Spain was fulfilled in a simple way. Ex-Templars were encouraged to join similar military Orders which differed only in that they owed their allegiance to the Spanish crown rather than the pope. One Order, that of St. James of the Sword the Knights of Santiago, was actually affiliated to the Knights Hospitaller to ensure its survival. They too became immensely powerful and controlled more than 200 commandaries throughout Spain by the end of the fifteenth century. Thus Templar influence continued in mainland Europe. In France and England some Templars joined the Knights Hospitallers, but most simply seemed to vanish.

People condemned for heresy in medieval Europe shared a similar fate to the alleged dissidents condemned in Soviet Russia during the Stalinist era. The victims became 'non-persons', their records were destroyed and all traces of them and their beliefs were completely erased. The only records remaining intact are those of the persecutor, Holy Mother the Church, hardly the most even-handed or dispassionate of sources. Thus getting to grips with the reality that lies behind the romantic myths and legends surrounding the warrior knights is extremely difficult. The French local archives disclose many details of their land dealings while other documents disclosing some of their history do surface from time to time.


Templar Novice

According to many writers, the admission of postulants took place at weekly chapter meetings. If a majority of the members agreed, the candidate was examined by two or three senior brothers. If his answers were satisfactory, which meant that he was a free man, noble, fit and of legitimate birth, he was brought before the master.

The secret initiation ceremony, took place in a copy of the rotunda of the Church of the Holy Sepulcher in Jerusalem. Many Templar churches and chapels were build round with this in mind, and in their center, as at the Templar Vera Cruz Church of Segovia in Spain, there was often an actual model of the tomb of Christ, in the form of a two-storied structure with steps leading up. At some stage the special ceremony was devised for initiated members of the order whereby they were given a momentary glimpse of the supreme vision of God attainable on earth, before which they prostrated themselves in adoration.

Knights were initiated into the temple in a secret ceremony held at night in the guarded chapter house. The great prior would ask the assembled knights several times if they had any objections to admitting the novice to the order. Hearing none, he reviewed the rules of the order and asked whether the novice had a wife and family, debts or disease, and if he owed allegiance to any other master. Having answered in the negative, the novice knelt, asking to become a 'servant and slave' of the temple and swearing obedience by God and the Virgin Mary.

During the ritual of admission to the Order, reference was made to the immortality of God and so to the intactness of the Son of God. John of Cassanhas, Templar Preceptor of Noggarda, tells how the leader of an admission ritual declares, 'Believe thou in God, who has not died and will never die.'

When the moment came for the postulant to take his vows, he was required to place his hand not on the Bible, which was the usual practice, but on the Missal open at the point in the Mass where the body of Christ is mentioned. Several brother priests, such as Bertrand de Villers and Etienne de Dijon, both from the diocese of Langres, said that at the point in the Mass where the Host is consecrated they were told to omit the words Hoc est enim corpis meum.

He then vowed to follow "the usage and custom of the house"; and to help to conquer the holy Land. After this he was formally admitted to the order, and the white mantel was placed on his shoulders. The brother-priest then spoke Psalm 133:

Ecce quam bonum et quam jocundum habitare fratres in unum - Behold how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity.  It is like precious oil poured on the head, running down on the beard, running down on Aaron's beard, down upon the collar of his robes.  It is as if the dew of Hermon were falling on Mount Zion. For there the LORD bestows his blessing, even life forevermore.    - Psalms 133 - a song of ascents (of David)

According to George Sassoon (co-author of the Manna Machine, this psalm refers to a ritual relating to the mana machine, a high tech device which purportedly fed the ancient Israelites during their exodus from Egypt. Imbued with mysterious powers, it was venerated as the Ark of the Covenant.


Noel Currer-Briggs, The Shroud and the Grail - A Modern Quest for the True Grail

Ian Wilson, The Shroud of Turin - The Burial Cloth of Jesus Christ?

Ancient Wisdom and Secret Sects


It is claimed by records kept by elders of the tradition of Dynion Mwyn, that Llewelyn Olaf ap Gruffudd, The Last True Prince of Wales, was a Knights Templar.   We have no way of checking whether this is true or not, but there are records that he supported the Templars greatly and allowed them to enter his ports when they were not allowed entry to others.  His successors are claimed to have kept this tradition and during the trials in the early 1300s allowed them refuge in Wales - the mountains still being a place unattainable by the crown in any real sense. Who knows what else they may have taken there with them?

But whatever the truth of his involvement with the Knights, he was also the greatest unifying force of Wales during the middle ages.   After imprisoning his brothers and taking the kingdom of Gwynedd for himself, Llewelyn was able to assert his claim to be called "Prince of Wales." The title was accorded him officially by Henry III in l267 at the Treaty of Montgomery recognizing the Welsh leader's claim to the three kingdoms of Gwynedd, Powys and Deheubarth.   Wales was poised to take an early place among the developing independent nation states of Europe. All changed, however, and all too soon. The accession to the English throne of Edward I in l272 completely reversed the tide of affairs.

The ambition of King Edward was to unite the whole of the island of Britain under his kingship and this meant he had ultimately to conquer Wales and Scotland. Llewelyn's own formidable problems made the task a much easier one than was perhaps expected, considering the early defeats that the Welsh armies inflicted upon the invading English, not used to fighting in mountainous terrain.

In 1264, although Prince Llewelyn allied with Simon de Montfort against the King of England, his alliance was short lived. In 1265 Simon de Montfort was killed at the battle of Evesham, and the King of England pushed Prince Llewellyn deep into Wales. But finally at the treaty of Montgomery, Llewellyn succeeded in obtaining from the king, confirmation that he was the true Prince of Wales, and the right to demand homage by all the Welsh lords.

Certain records claim that Prince Llewelyn was patron to Hywel Voel who was a Druid and Bard. These records claim that Hywel Voel wrote of Prince Llewelyn's involvement with the Knights Templar and the Ordre de Seon.  Tradition writings show that in 1271 A.D. Hywel commanded those trusted scribes and clerks who owed allegiance to him, to begin the task of compiling what was left of the known mystical knowledge of the Llewelyn family into ordered volumes. It is said that Hywel was the first to collect The Thirteen Treasures. He also caused The Owl, to be created. This was the first Grimoire or spell book of our tradition. The accumulation and recording of this knowledge, was no mean feat, for the political climate of those years was not conducive to study, travel or teaching.

The manuscripts also claim that relatives of Eleanor de Montfort, Prince Llewelyn's wife's, were initiates of the Ordre de Seon in France.  Eleanor and Prince Llewelyn were first married by proxy in 1275. Eleanor's lineage was highly distinguished. Among her uncles was a king of England, a king of France, and a holy Roman Emperor. Eleanor sailed from France to Wales in 1275, but her ship was seized and she was imprisoned by the king of England, in Windsor castle.

At the Treaty of Aberconwy in l277, Prince Llewelyn was forced to accept humiliating terms and to give up most of his recently acquired lands, keeping only Gwynedd west of the Conwy River.

It was Also in this year that Hywel compiled the Thirteen Treasures and added additional knowledge from several sources: from the Druids came the sacred knowledge of the Stones; from the Order of the Knights Templars he added the Magick of the Egyptians (Hywel claimed that Prince Llywelyn was initiated into the Order of the Knights Templars in 1279 A.D.); from the Persian Gypsies he added the Mithraic astrological mysteries; from Pictish ancestors came the remains of the Faerie tradition; from the nine maidens of the Isle de Seon came the ancient mystic knowledge of the Etruscans and the Ordre de Seon.

Prince Llewelyn died in 1282.


How much of the above is true and how much is myth and how much is legend is difficult to ascertain, since much of the existing records have been "christianized" beyond recognition.   But it is my considered opinion that based on my continued research, there is much truth in the above statements....Rhuddlwm Gawr

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There are stories claiming the Knights Templar order was never destroyed.  The end of the Templars was marked by the execution of the last Grand Master, Jacques de Molay in 1314. But in fact they actually changed their name and went underground. There is evidence which suggests many famous men were members: Sir Isaac Newton is named as one. The great Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama journeyed with the Templar cross insignia on his sails, as did Christopher Columbus. There is also evidence to suggest the Templars discovered America some 80 years before Columbus.

In fact the Order of the Knights Templar is still in existence today, though allegedly under another name.  Its members still meet secretly to discuss business, conduct rituals and plot the destiny of the world behind closed doors.

The Templars are in possession of mysterious "great secrets". These "great secrets" were particular knowledge which, if revealed, would undermine societies fundamental view of Christianity and other religions. 

These were:

1) The Brotherhood of Mene  2) The secret of the Grail  3) The secret of the Ark.  4) The secret of the Kabbalah.  5)The Hidden Treasure.   6) The secret of the Tables of Testimony, and  7) The Three Secrets of the Egyptians; These secrets were to be hidden until the return of the Knights Templar to their positions of power that they once held.

Some of the secrets are now being revealed:


The Brotherhood of Mene was connected to The Knights Templar of Wales, Scotland and Portugal.  Records kept by elders of the tradition of Dynion Mwyn, show that that Llewelyn Olaf ap Gruffudd, The Last True Prince of Wales, was a Knights Templar and of the Brotherhood of Mene. We have no way of checking whether this is true or not, but there are records that he supported the Templars greatly and allowed them to enter his ports when they were not allowed entry to others. His successors are claimed to have kept this tradition and during the trials in the early 1300s allowed them refuge in Wales - the mountains still being a place unattainable by the crown in any real sense. Who knows what else they may have taken there with them?

Records claim that Prince Llewelyn was patron to Hywel Voel who was a Druid and Bard. These records show that Hywel Voel wrote of Prince Llewelyn's involvement with the Knights Templar and the Ordre de Seon. Other writings show that in 1271 A.D. Hywel commanded those trusted scribes and clerks who owed allegiance to him, to begin the task of compiling what was left of the known mystical knowledge of the Templars into ordered volumes. It is said that Hywel was the first to discover The Three Secrets.

Hywel Voel discovered knowledge from several sources: from the Druids came the sacred knowledge of the Stones; from the Order of the Knights Templars came the Three Secrets of the Egyptians; from the Jewish Mystics came the secrets of the Kabbalah; from the Persian Gypsies he added the Mithraic astrological mysteries; and from the nine maidens of the Isle de Seon came the ancient mystic knowledge of the Etruscans and the Ordre de Seon. Prince Llewelyn died in 1282.


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The official historic account of Christopher Columbus's voyage to the New World is filled with inaccuracies.  Columbus was indeed the son of a Genoese weaver and took to the sea at an early age.  He traveled to Lisbon where he married into a Knights Templar family and gained access to a trove of secret charts and maps.  His wife's brother governed Porto Santo in Madeira, where the son of Elizabeth Sinclair and Charles Drummond had met and married into the family of Columbus's in-laws.  Knowledge of four hundred years of Norse ventures in the West as well as the hundred-year-old saga of grandfather Henry Sinclair's voyage ended in Columbus's hands.

It was there on Madeira that he made his decision to cross the Atlantic.  Having gathered a wealth of input in a few short years after his marriage, from Madeira he also made voyages that served to increase  his personal experience.  The education gained on the tiny island chain was immeasurable.  By 1479, Columbus was ready to make the voyage.

It is said that one of his pilots had already been to the Americas, just before the 1492 voyage.  In 1488 a ship belonging to Jean Cousins of France was hit by a storm in the Atlantic that blew them so far off course that it reached either North or South America.  Cousins pilot was Martin Alonso Pinzon, of Palos, Spain, who captained the Pinta for Columbus.

Portugal's role in discovering or re-discovering the Americas has been relegated to second place but in fact Portugal did more to map the globe than any other country including neighboring Spain.  The catalyst for the countries explosion of discovery was another prince, Henry the Navigator as well as Portugal's King Dinas I, who saved the Templars from the Pope.  Portugal's role began as the Crusades ended.   The Templars continued to play a key part.  See: The Lost Colony of the Templars by Steven Sora.


A question that has long tormented treasure hunters and scholars around the world is: Where is the Treasure that the Templars supposedly hid from King Phillip? 

When Phillip of France caused the Templars to be rounded up on Friday the 13th he not only created the superstition of "Friday the 13th" but he also failed to seize all of their holdings and treasures.  Once the day of the arrests was known, the Paris Templar Temple arranged that its treasures be loaded on a wagon train headed toward the port city of La Rochelle.   From there, it was deposited aboard the Templar ships, setting sail to an unknown destination. According to Andrew Sinclair, author of "The Sword and the Grail", the Templars were said to flee with the treasure to Scotland.  

It is thought that these ships carried the vast wealth of the Templars, but in truth, they could carry but a fraction of their treasure, if the tales about their wealth are reasonably accurate. The ultimate destination is unknown and it is unknown if these ships even made it to their destination.

However, it would be a reasonable assumption that these ships made landfall in England. At this point in the story, nobody can give an authoritative answer to the question of "where does the treasure reside?"

Speculation regarding Rosslyn and Oak Island point to the strongest possibilities regarding the final resting place of the Templar treasure. There was significant engineering done at Oak Island and the investigation there has destroyed as much as it has uncovered. Only time will tell if anything remains, but I doubt that anyone would go through such an elaborate hoax.


It was in Scotland that they founded the St. Clair family, later to be known as Sinclair. The Sinclair's built Rosslyn Chapel, an often cited link between the Temple and Freemasonry. This chapel becomes temporarily the resting place of the legendary Holy Grail before its final journey to Nova Scotia, (a site currently enjoying increased fame due to the success of the popular Dan Brown novel, The Da Vinci Code).


The Knights Templar have been linked to the mystery of Oak Island (Nova Scotia) by many, primarily because historical records suggest that they had both motive and means to deposit treasure in the Money Pit. Compelling of all is their connection with the Holy Land, prompting speculation of untold wealth in the form of the Holy Grail.

The Sinclair's of Scotland became the Grand Masters of the Knights Templar order and desired a new land in which to establish their utopian Templar government.  Using both their money and military strength coupled with the sailing abilities of the Zeno's, they sailed westwards towards Nova Scotia.

The arrival of the Knights Templar in this region is supported by a Zeno narrative and map attributed to Vopell and Vavassatore. It depicts the landmass of Nova Scotia or New Scotland with the figure of a crowned knight.  Further evidence exists of visitors in New England, in the form of the Tower in Newport, Rhode Island and, the Westford Knight, a carving of the figure of an armored, European knight holding a cruciform sword, a common Templar emblem on graves.

With the motive to settle in Nova Scotia, one question remains, what happened to all the Templar treasure? Assuming treasure was still remaining after the building and sustaining St. Clair's and the voyage to America it would have been necessary to hide it.

Once the unsuccessful colony of the Temple died out, instead of sailing back east, the American Templars decided to hide the Treasure. They are said to have built a complex 'Money Pit' on Oak Island by engineering flood traps to prevent anyone reaching the treasure. The spot is marked using the form of a stone cross, symbolism typical of the Templar.

Evidence exists to support the Templar's involvement in the Oak Island Money Pit, but to expand this theory further, it would be useful to consider the influence of the Freemasons in this area, as the Templar were a precursor for this select group of individuals. There remains a strong connection to this area with the Knights Templar, whether relative to the treasure or not and further study may shed light on the mystery.

With regard to the Rosslyn Chapel described above, the builders of the chapel were known supporters of the Templars. However, nobody has ever found anything at Rosslyn but many consider the chapel to be a "key" to where the real treasure is concealed.

Some of the treasure that left in those ships was used to support the members of the order in the purchase of land, supplies, and other needs. Considering the requirements for a number of dispossessed Knights on the run from France and the Church, gold would be a necessity.

We believe that a great deal of the Templar fortune never left France.  It was concealed from King Phillip because the Templars did not have the time to move it out of France.  We believe it is still hidden.

Oak Island? - Roslyn Chapel? - Hidden in France?   Many questions remain!



Children of Henry Sinclair (The Discoverer)

Henry:             Marries Giles (Egida) Douglas - (grandaughter of King Robert III)

John:                Marries Ingeborg (daughter of Waldemar King of Denmark)

Elizabeth:       Marries Sr. John Drummond of Stobhall and Cargill, brother of Annabella queen of King Robert III

Children of Elizabeth Sinclair and John Drummond

Walter:       Remains in possessions of lands and titles in Scotland

John:            Moves to Madeira; marries Catrina vaz de Lordelo, widow of Tristao vaz Teixeira, whose aunt married Bartolomeo Perestrello (brother of Christopher Columbus's wife Felipa Perestrello); upon Catrina's death, John Drummond marries Branca Alfonso da Cunha

Children of John Drummond and Branca Afonso Da Cunha

John, "John the Scot," born in 1431

Diogo, born in 1432

Catarina, born in 1433

Gumar, born in 1435

Beatriz, born in 1437

Isabel, born in 1438

Joanna, born in 1440

Branca, born in 1442


The Wife of Columbus was Dona Felipa Perestrello e Moniz.  She was a granddaughter - on her mothers side - of Gil Moniz a Knight of Christ , and daughter of the Genoese explorer Bartolomero Perestrello, also a Knight of Christ.

Bartolomeo Perestrello also had a son.  This son, also called Bartolemeo Perestrello, married Guimar Teixeira, the aunt of Tristao vaz Teixeira, who was the first husband of Catrina vaz de Lordelo.  Catrina latter married John Drummond, so of Elizabeth Sinclair, a daughter of Henry Sinclair.

Thus the Perestrello and Teixeira families are connected by marriage.  The Lordelo and Drummond families are connected by marriage.  And soon the name of Christopher Columbus is brought into the Perestrello family.


The Grail is much more than the cup used in The Last Supper.  It is a cup made from a Magickal Stone which could confer eternal life.  This stone was no ordinary stone, but a stone which had come down from heaven...a Meteorite which had a special consistency...some sources claim that it is radioactive.

"I will tell you how they are fed: they live from a stone whose Essence is pure...It is called lapis exilis [small, or paltry, stone]. By virtue of this stone the Phoenix is burned to ashes, in which she is reborn. Thus does the Phoenix molt her feathers, after which she shines dazzling and bright, and as lovely as before. However ill a mortal man may be, from the day on which he sees the Stone, he cannot die for that week, nor does he lose his color. For if anyone, maid or man, were to look at the Grail for two hundred years, you would have to admit that his color was as fresh as in his early prime...Such powers does the Stone confer on mortal men that their flesh and bones are soon made young again. This stone is also called the Grail."   - Wolfram von Eschenbach, Parzival

An interpretation of the grail as a simple meteorite is alluringly simple, but unfortunately it does not explain how this heavenly stone should be able to provide food, and why it was, as described by Chrétien, decorated with jewels, made of gold, and emitted a bright light. Furthermore, to the people of the middle ages, the idea that stones could fall from heaven to earth was totally alien.

In a brilliant book, From Ritual to Romance (1920) which was influenced by Frazer's Golden Bough and which in turn influenced T. S. Eliot's poem 'The Waste Land', Jessie L. Weston argued that the central themes of the Grail legends were connected with a pagan fertility ritual, the restoration to vigorous life of the dying god of vegetation; that the Fisher King was so named because the fish is a symbol of swarming life; and that beneath the surface of the legends can be discerned the rites and symbols of a secret (tradition), which had transmuted primitive fertility ritual into an 'initiation into the secret of Life, physical and spiritual'.

This ritual was incorporated into the initiation ritual of the Templars.



(To be Continued)


The destruction of the Order of Knights Templar did not succeed in suppressing the teachings enshrined within it.  Certain of the French Knights Templar took refuge with their brethren of the Temple of Scotland, and in that country their traditions became mingled to some extent with the ancient Celtic rites of Heredom, thus forming one of the sources from which the Scottish Rite of Masonry evolved. [CW Ledbeater, Freemasonry and its Ancient Mystic Rites, Gramercy Books,   New York, NY 1986]

True Freemasonry is esoteric; it is not of this world.   All that we have here is a link, a doorway, through which the student may pass into the unknown.  This is one of the precepts of the Templar philosophy.   Freemasonry has nothing to do with things of form except realizing that form is molded by and manifests the life it contains. [Manly P. Hall, The Lost Keys of Freemasonry, Macoy Publishing and Masonic Supply Co., Richmond, VA 1968 ]

It is widely accepted that freemasonry originated in Scotland and was connected to the Templars through Rosslyn Chapel, which we have previously discussed.  Sir William St. Clair built the chapel in 1440 to house artifacts originally brought to Scotland by the Knights Templar in 1126.

The chapel was built as a replica of Herod's temple in Jerusalem, which, as we discussed previously, the Templars excavated during their time in the Holy Land.  Even ,ore importantly, the chapel contains a unique carving , which depicts the initiation of a Mason by a figure wearing a Knight Templar's mantle. [Jeremy Harwood, The Freemasons, Hermes House, London, 2006 ]

Many Freemasons believe that their order is descended from the remnants of the Knights Templar temples in Scotland - we certainly can find no fault in that belief.



bookHere is a reading list which contains important books on the Templars. These are the best introductory texts available.  You should be able to click on a title and order from


Knights TemplarHoly Blood, Holy Grail ~ Usually ships in 24 hours - ASIN 0-440-136-482 - Controversial ideas about the genealogy of Jesus, Rennes le Chateau and the Templar involvement.  Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh, and Henry Lincoln 1982, Delacorte Press


The Messianic Legacy ~ Usually ships in 24 hours - ASIN 0-552-13182-2
by Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh and Henry Lincoln 1986, Dell Publishing


The Temple and the Lodge ~ Usually ships in 24 hours - ASIN 1-559-70126-9
by Michael Baigent and Richard Leigh,  1989, Arcade Publishing
Traces the knights who escaped from Philip IV to Scotland and the subsequent development of Freemasonry.


A History of Secret Societies   ~ Out of Print ~ Arkon Daraul 1961, Citadel Press




The Holy Grail Revealed ~ Out of Print ~ by Patricia & Lionel Fanthorpe 1982, Newcastle Publishing Co., Inc.



The Sign and the Seal ~ Usually ships in 24 hours - ASIN 0-671-86541-2 - by Graham Hancock 1992, Touchstone, Simon & Schuster  The search for the Ark of the Covenant in Ethiopia including the part played by the Templars.



The Knights Templar and their Myth ~ Usually ships in 24 hours - ASIN 0-892-812-737 - by Peter Partner 1990, Destiny Books


Dungeon, Fire and Sword ~ Usually ships in 24 hours - ASIN 0-871-316-579 -The Knights Templar in the Crusades - by John J. Robinson, 1991, M. Evens and Company, Inc. A detailed narrative of the earlier history of the Templars.



Robert the Bruce - King of Scots ~ Usually ships in 24 hours - ASIN 0-862-416-167 - by Ronald McNair Scott, 1982, Barnes & Noble, Inc.




The Monks of War - The Military Religious Orders ~ Usually ships in 24 hours - ASIN 0-1401-9501-7    by Desmond Seward, 1995, Penguin Books   Covers most of the military religious orders, including the Templars - up to the present time




The Sword and the Grail ~ ASIN 0-517-58618-5 (Out of Print) by Andrew Sinclair 1992, Crown Publishers, Inc. Covers the effect the Templars had on Scotland and the role they played in journeys to America in 14th century.



The New Knighthood -  ASIN 0-521-558-72-7  by Malcolm Barber

In the Shadow of the Temple - ASIN 0-060-153-628 (Out of Print)  by Meir Ben-Dov, 1985, Keter Publishing House, Jerusalem and Harper & Row, New York About the discovery of Ancient Jerusalem.

The Templars : Knights of God ~ Usually ships in 24 hours - ASIN 0-892-81221-4 by Edward Burman  A scholarly book based on documents from the British Library, containing facts relating to individuals otherwise un-noted. Gives a succinct overview of the history.

Bloodline of the Holy Grail - ASIN 1-85230-870-2  by Laurence Gardner, 1996, Element Books Ltd.  The Templars feature in this fascinating genealogical search for the bloodline of Jesus.

Chronicles of the Crusades - ASIN 1-85833-589-2   Edited by Elizabeth Hallam, 1996, Bramley Books   The story told by those who were there. Beautifully and extensively illustrated in colour.

Born In Blood: The Lost Secrets of Freemasonry - ASIN 0-871-316-021  by John J. Robinson  Well researched speculative history of the Templars and links with Freemasonry. .

The Rule of the Templars: The French Text of the Rule of the Order of the Knights Templar by Henri da Curzon ASIN 0-85115-701-7
Translated by J.M. Upton-Ward, Boydell & Brewer Ltd.  An insight into the severe regime under which the Templars lived.

The Piebald Standard : A Biography of the Knights Templars Edith Simon / Hardcover / Published 1977
(Publisher Out Of Stock)

The Story of the Knights Templars - 1118-1315 Ferris E. Lewis / Paperback / Published 1997

The History of the Knights Templars ~ Usually ships in 24 hours  Charles G. Addison, David Hatcher Childress / Paperback / Published 1997

On Crusade : More Tales of the Knights Templar ~ Ships in 2-3 days Katherine Kurtz (Editor) / Paperback / Published 1998

Knights Templar History ~ Charles G. Addison / Hardcover / Published 1976 (Publisher Out Of Stock)

Below listed books may not be available for online ordering

The Templar Legacy & the Masonic Inheritance within Rosslyn Chapel ASIN 9521493-1-1
by Tim Wallace-Murphy, The Friends of Rosslyn
An attempt to interpret the symbolism in the carvings and windows at Rosslyn and their message for posterity.

The Templar Tradition in the Age of Aquarius ASIN 0-939660-17-2
by Gaeton Delaforce, 1987, Threshold Books
Upholds the spiritual values of knighthood and applies them to today.

The Origins of the Order of the Temple
Malcolm Barber, 1970, Studia Monastica Vol XII
Concerns Hughes de Payens and the Court of Champagne.

The Holy Grail Revealed
Patricia and Lionel Fanthorpe, 1982, Newcastle Publishing Co. Inc.

St. Bernard of Clairveaux - Medieval Studies Vol II
M. Kilian Huifgard, 1989, Edwin Mellen Press

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Sauer, Geoffrey. Review of Foucault's Pendulum. [Online] Available, February 12th, 1990

Messer, Martin. The Umberto Eco Page. [Online] Available, September 19th, 1997

In Migne, Patrologia Latina, 148:329 trans. Oliver J. Thatcher, and Edgar Holmes McNeal, eds., A Source Book for Medieval History, (New York: Scribners, 1905), 512-13 .[Online] Available,

Bernard of Clairvaux, In Praise of the New Knighthood, prologue-chapter five, translated by Conrad Greenia ocso, from Bernard of Clairvaux: Treatises Three, Cistercian Fathers Series, Number Nineteen, © Cistercian Publications, 1977, pages 127-145. [Online]Available, 1996.

Braun & Schneider. THE HISTORY OF COSTUME. [Online] Available, c.1861-1880

Grant Fritchey and Celtic Rose Design. . Knights of the Temple Main. [Online] Available, January 11, 1996.

Sinclair, Niven . The Friends of Rosslyn Index. [Online] Available, Jun 3, 1997.

Gilles C H Nullens. Catholics, Heretics and Heresy . [Online] Available, Sep 15, 1997.

Mizrach, Steve; edited by Morgana. Mysteries of Rennes-le-Chateau and the Prieure du Sion . [Online] Available, Nov 24, 1997.

Author unknown. A Gallery of Photos Taken at Rennes Le Chateau, May 1995. [Online] Available, February 13, 1997.

Kalongonis, Bill, The Lance, The Swastika , and the Merobingians, [Online] Available, Oct 18, 1997.

Boinet, Thierry . 14 Members of Cult Killed by French Police. [Online] Available, Last Modified: Unknown.

Ontario Consultants on Religious Tolerance, SOLAR TEMPLE (INTERNATIONAL CHIVALRIC ORDER SOLAR TRADITION). [Online] Available, Aug 12, 1997

Author unknown Killer Cults. [Online] Available, No date given.

SOLAR TEMPLE LODGE PRESS (AUSTRALIA). THE DIVINE CONCEPTION And the Crisis of the Modern World. [Online] Available, Sep 27, 1996.


The Mystical Life of Jesus by H. Spenser Lewis F.R.C., Ph.D copyright 1929 The Rosicrucian Press, San Jose, California

Holy Blood, Holy Grail by Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh & Henry Lincoln London: Jonathan Cape, 1982; 445p, [24]p of plates, 25cm New York: Dell Publishing, 1983 London: Corgi, 1983 (pbk); 528p, [24]p of plates, 18cm London: Arrow Books, 1996 (revised and updated) £6.99 ASIN 0-09-968241-9

Bloodline of the Holy Grail, by Lawrence Gardner, 1996, Element Books, Inc. Rockport, MA , ASIN 1-85230-870-2

Foucault's Pendulum, by Umberto Eco, 1988 Gruppo Editorale Fabbri Bompiani, sonzogno Etas S.p.A., Milano. English translation 1989 by Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, Inc.

From: Newman, P., (1940), "A Short History of Cyprus", Longmans, Green & Co., London.

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